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This article was originally published in issue #46
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The HK Audio Line Base Single system is a good-looking, flexible, long-throw active loudspeaker system that delivers a heavyweight 1,200W RMS performance from a compact and relatively lightweight form factor.
Can be scaled up
Lightweight and compact
Carrying bags and covers are not included
2016 seems to have been the year of the 'box on a pole' PA system – and why not? The best of them offer incredibly easy to transport and set-up systems delivering high quality sound for smaller venues. Germany's HK Audio can usually be relied on for a good offering in any given market sector, so how does its Line Base system stand up? Bob Thomas finds out.
The Line Base Single system is part of HK Audio’s Elements range of mix-and-match active and passive components, a range that has had a great deal of success with musicians because of its compact size, light weight and high-quality sonic performance. The Line Base single system is made up of two E 835 passive mid/high column enclosures that clip together and mount on a single E110 Sub AS active system subwoofer. The Line Base system is essentially a line-array that is designed to deliver a long-throw performance, making it ideal for use both in larger concert venues and at outside events.
An E835 passive mid/high column can handle 300W RMS and features, as its name implies, eight 3.5” broadband drivers that cover the frequency range from 140Hz to 20kHz. The E110 Sub AS active system subwoofer derives its name from its single 10” driver and the cabinet also contains the 2 x 600W fully-protected Class D amplifiers that power the system. A rear-mounted control panel carries all the necessary controls and input and output connectors. Assembling the system is a simple task, made easier by HK Audio’s E-Connect locking interconnect system in which a cylindrical tube on the bottom of the E835 slots and locks into a matching receptacle on either the top of another E835 or on the top (or side) of a E110 Sub AS. Plastic wedges are provided that can be used to lock the E835 to each other and to the E110 Sub AS in order to ensure that the two mid/high units are correctly aligned for maximum efficiency.
The ability to put the system together with the sub in either a vertical or a horizontal orientation is an example of just how well thought out the Line Base system is. Whilst a vertically positioned E110 Sub AS is stable when used with one or two E385 mid/high units, it is going to potentially get a bit unsettled if you go up to the possible maximum of three. With the sub positioned horizontally, a triple E385 rig is going to be completely stable and, if you add (as you can) a second sub in the shape of a passive E110, you’re going to have a very powerful system at your disposal.
In terms of I/O, the rear-mounted control panel carries not only the single Input (a jack/XLR combi connector that can be set to either -10dB or +4db input level) and a Through XLR that allows you to daisy-chain systems together, but also a pair of Speakon outputs from the power amplifiers, one of which connects to further mid/high speakers and the other to a further sub. One of the features of the Elements system is that it contains various accessories that allow you to physically position your particular combination of tops and subs in various different ways. One really useful accessory is a floor-standing base that connects to the E110 Sub AS’s Speakon and also acts as a E-Connect mount for the E835, allowing you to position the mid/high units away from the sub.
The audio controls set the Bass Gain (the volume level of the sub) and the Mid/High Filter matches the frequency response of the active electronics to the number of connected Mid/High units.
The Line Base system delivers the excellent audio performance that characterises HK Audio’s Element series of products. Using the Bass Gain, you can set the Line Base up perfectly for music playback, speech, live sound and DJ/club use. Although the confines of our video studio didn’t allow for any real test of its long-throw characteristics, I was able to confirm its narrow 70° horizontal dispersion that will tend to beam the sound over a much longer distance than the significantly wider horizontal dispersion that is more commonly found in this type of “single column plus sub” line-array system.
The HK Audio Line Base Single system is a good-looking, flexible, long-throw active loudspeaker system that delivers a heavyweight 1,200W RMS performance from a compact and relatively lightweight form factor. Designed with long-throw applications in larger venues in mind, a pair of these systems would certainly do just that in delivering their 2.400W RMS to the audience. In smaller venues where coverage is a primary consideration, you could potentially either angle the two E835 enclosures slightly or position them on their optional floor-standing bases to give you the required coverage. On top of all that, HK Audio offers a five-year guarantee, so it’s going to be well worthwhile checking them out at your local HK Audio dealer.